Thursday 27 June 2013

UK Road Deaths Down

Road death numbers are down in the UK to the lowest figure since data recording started in 1926. 1754 deaths were recorded, 8% down on the previous year, however the number of cyclists killed has increased from 107 to 118. These figures are probably representative of the increased number of cyclists on UK roads.

Wednesday 26 June 2013

The Guide - What To Do If You Knock Down an Animal

God forbid it should happen, but how would you react if you ran over an animal?
Would you just keep driving, would you claim your road-kill trophy or would you try to resuscitate it?

In the UK, a dog (as well as a goat, horse, cattle, ass, mule, sheep and pig) does come within the remit of the Road Traffic Act and is a reportable accident so you are required by law to report it to the police.

The UK Highway Code Rule 286 says:

If you are involved in a collision which causes damage or injury to any other person, vehicle, animal or property, you MUST

give your own and the vehicle owner’s name and address, and the registration number of the vehicle, to anyone having reasonable grounds for requiring them
if you do not give your name and address at the time of the collision, report it to the police as soon as reasonably practicable, and in any case within 24 hours.

For those other creatures, how you react is up to yourself. Lately in the UK there has been an increase in the number of road traffic accidents involving the expanding deer population. This type of accident can cause considerable damage to your vehicle, as well as the poor deer.
From the deer's perspective you have a moral duty to try and save the animal if possible, by contacting the police or a vet. You will need to get the police involved anyway if you are submitting a car insurance claim.

In the Scottish Highlands, Kate Macpherson has another view on the subject. She collects dead badgers, foxes and stoats from the sides of roads and, using her taxidermy skills, incorporates their heads into striking finished products.

The 46-year-old has faced criticism from animal rights campaigners because of her decision to leave the animals' faces on the sporrans.

But the mother-of-three has defended her one-woman business. "If I didn't pick up these animals they would be rotting in a ditch," she said. "I'm creating something useful from them rather than allowing their beauty to be wasted.

About the Author
Malcolm McNeill is CEO of Best Car Hire offering clients the ability to search and rent a vehicle of their choice - anytime and anywhere. Many of our clients visiting Scotland for the first time ask for people carrier hire at Glasgow Airport or people carrier hire at Edinburgh Airport to enjoy a comfortable view of the Scottish countryside.

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Monday 24 June 2013

Edinburgh And The Tracks of My Tears

Edinburgh in Scotland has been building a new tram system for the past 10 years. It has been fraught with scandal and disappointment, but at long last there is light at the end of the Haymarket tunnel - bear with me commuters! 

Currently the traffic is abysmal, and has been for many years. The trams were brought in to save an ailing road and transport infrastructure but in doing so have created more jams and road rage than you would ever think possible.

So what happens when the trams finally start running, how will the car drivers cope?

From evidence gleaned from around the WWWinternet, well it would appear that most tram accidents occur without cars being involved. The types of accidents we can look forward to are:

Bikes getting their wheels stuck in the ruts and discarding the unlucky cyclist
Blind people falling from the platform
Sighted people falling
Trams failing to stop and hitting the tram in front
Drunk people falling under trams
Cars hitting pedestrians risking life and limb to catch the tram (literally)
And so on....

I myself was a young boy when Glasgow discarded its tram and trolley bus network. A daft move in most people's opinion. The trams in Glasgow produced many a character in the shape of the tram conductors or clippies, notorious for their ambiguous cry at ticketless louts - " Come oan - Get aff!"

LATEST UPDATE - The trams finally opened in Scotland's capital 
at the end of May 2014 after years of delay, spiraling costs and a lengthy dispute between the city council and its contractor.
The project was due to cost £375 million when announced in 2003 but that figure has risen to around £776 million to date.
Organisers also backtracked on plans to create a number of different tram lines, instead launching a single track running from Edinburgh's New Town to the airport.

Edinburgh Trams

Technology Throws Down the Gauntlet

Love to hear the robin go tweet tweet tweet

In the news this week is the production of experimental Bluetooth-enabled gloves by the designer Sean Miles of Designworks. This will allow the wearer to use the glove as a mobile phone. At this stage it is not clear how the wearer can make calls, but the demonstrations prove that calls can be received.

This leads to an interesting debate as to what if a driver wearing these gloves(hey! what's wrong with driving gloves?) speaks to the hand while driving. 
Is he or she subject to the same UK penalty for using a handheld device or will the law need to be changed to cover this?

The gloves are off!

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Wednesday 12 June 2013

Avoid the Holiday Nightmares

As the time approaches when you disappear on your annual vacation we decided to put together a list of 5 must-do activities ahead of the game.

1. Arrange a Decent Holiday Location - ok it sounds cheesey!, but just remember most people only get a few days vacation every year so it's go to count. If you don't have much time, go somewhere that has either been recommended to you or can be pre-determined using holiday destination information sites, like
2. Beware of Trouble - make sure before you travel there there are no wars or civil unrest where you are going. Apart from difficulties with travel insurance, you don't know what you are getting yourself into. A couple of years ago we flew to Bangkok 1 week after the military clampdown on the "yellow shirts". Whilst Thailand is a beautiful place, we were literally the only Western tourists there, and it seemed a mighty depressing place!
3. Stay Healthy! - make sure you get the proper vaccinations for the area you are travelling to. Don't leave it to chance as you never know what's lurking in the undergrowth.
4. Keep Your Cash! - try and avoid carrying loads of dosh around in your money belt a little bit is ok but large wads of wonga is just asking to be extracted from you. The majority of countries in the world have global bank ATMs ( sometimes in the weirdest of places!).
5. Hire a Decent Car! - you don't drive a wreck back home, so why leave it to chance until you arrive at your destination. By booking well in advance you will get the best value deals going. Make sure you hire something which is comfortable, affordable and not too far away from what you drive back home.

Malcolm McNeill is CEO of car rental website
Download the latest car rental iPad app here.
Also try our new Motorhome rental site